The ways in which girls and women are objectified, dismissed, neglected, harassed, silenced and abused seem to be endless. Girls and women have always been objectified in books, magazines, advertisements, tv shows and movies, and we have been overlooked and erased from our very own archived history. Black and Indigenous girls and women have suffered and have been erased even more so than white women.Our body parts are commodified. Archaic beliefs are held about our natural bodily functions, and unless you are a female, the full extent of the brutal truth about how girls and women are viewed, spoken about and treated has been hidden from you. This steady erosion of our humanness has created a world where, for the most part, we are treated like objects and not like living human beings.
A Queensland man has admitted to splashing petrol on his former partner and threatening to burn their house down, in a court case successfully prosecuted by the victim because the state’s police refused to bring domestic violence charges.
In 2017 police told the victim, Dani*, that there was a prima facie case against her former partner for threatening violence, but because there was “a low level of public interest” they would not bring a charge.
Her barrister, Clem van der Weegen, said the private prosecution and guilty plea should “deeply embarrass” the Queensland police.
The officer who conducted the review recommended no domestic violence charges against her former partner.
Instead, police turned the tables on Dani and warned she could be charged with assault for hitting the man – who she says is much larger and was acting in an aggressive manner – before running to safety.
A senior Queensland detective who said police were keeping an “open mind” as to whether the deaths of Hannah Clarke and her children were a case of a “husband being driven too far” has been stood aside from the investigation.
On Thursday, Thompson confirmed domestic and family violence orders had been granted against Baxter, saying there had been “a number of engagements of police” between the couple.
Renee Eaves, a victims’ advocate who has worked extensively with domestic abuse sufferers in their interactions with the Queensland police, said she could not believe the comments.
“This narrative is the most dangerous thing that exists for victims who doubt themselves after an attack that maybe they were partly responsible. Police seem to think women make up complaints or are complicit, and as a result they fail to protect them.
This all changed in 1975 with the introduction of “no-fault” divorce and the Family Court system.
Since its implementation, the family law system has been the subject of dozens of inquiries and amendments.
Patrick Parkinson, the Dean of Law at the University of Queensland, says when considering family law reform, it’s important to remember that the Family Court deals with much more than just marital disputes.
“It’s essential that you start with the proposition that disproportionately we are dealing with violence, abuse, mental illness and drug and alcohol abuse,” he says.
“If you understand that then you can probably understand that the adversarial system and decision-making by lawyers, many of whom have commercial law backgrounds, is not fit for purpose for dealing with those sorts of issues.”
Consider this: Over the past decade, the total number of people behind bars in Australia has skyrocketed, rising by almost 40 per cent since 2013, and 56 per cent since 2008, according to ABS data released earlier this month.
But while men continue to make up the majority of the prison population (92 per cent), the number of women being incarcerated is increasing at a significantly higher rate: a staggering 85 per cent over the past 10 years. Indigenous women account for much of that growth.
Behind these figures, though, is one often-overlooked fact: an overwhelming majority of women in prison are victims of domestic violence, with evidence suggesting between 70 per cent and 90 per cent of incarcerated women have been physically, sexually or emotionally abused as children or adults — an experience experts say frequently leads to their offending and criminalisation.
For Prior, the co-founder and principal legal officer of the Law and Advocacy Centre for Women (LACW), these small wins — keeping troubled, marginalised women out of jail — make leaving work at 8pm completely worth it.
For almost four years Prior has been doing just that. She and fellow lawyer Elena Pappas set up LACW in February 2016 in response to the dramatic increase in the number of women behind bars in Victoria.
Since then, they’ve represented hundreds of clients charged with everything from first-time shoplifting to murder, and weathered headwinds in the form of tough new bail laws, which have been criticised for making it harder to keep vulnerable women out of custody.
An Australian mother of five held in the deteriorating al-Hawl camp of northern Syria has been stripped of her citizenship – retroactive by three years – leaving two of her children potentially stateless and potentially permanently splitting her family.
Currently, there are 19 Australian women and 47 Australian children held in the al-Hawl camp. The Australian government is aware of their identities and the bona fides of their Australian citizenship or right to claim that citizenship.
They are family members of former foreign fighters who have been captured or killed. None of the Australian women in the camp were combatants, and many were coerced, forced or tricked into travelling to Syria.
The youngest child in the Australian group is less than two months old, born on 30 November last year.
Were the children and their mothers able to get to an Australian embassy or consulate, the Australian government would be legally obliged to provide them travel documents to return home.
A WOMAN whose children were killed by her estranged husband is backing the Daily Express crusade to remove parental rights from abusive and rapist fathers. Claire Throssell’s sons Jack, 12, and Paul, nine, were lured into the attic of their home by their father, Darren Sykes, with the promise of a train set and chocolate, while on a visit enforced by the Family Court.
Compared with brain injury research being done on athletes, the research involving people who have suffered similar injuries from intimate partner violence is in its infancy, said van Donkelaar.
The silence and stigma shrouding domestic violence mean those who suffer brain injuries are falling through the cracks of what van Donkelaar calls “an unrecognized public-health crisis in Canada.”
Domestic violence often includes blows to the head, face or neck, as well as strangulation, said van Donkelaar.
“Each of those experiences absolutely have the potential to cause some form of brain injury, similar to what you would see in many collision sports like football or hockey,” he said.